It has been an interesting summer, with me and my wife enjoying our first summer in Easthampton. The majority of the summer has been spent preparing for (drumroll) the birth of our son in October!
Fitting around the preparation I have been working on two new projects. The first is a piece for four iPads. The performance software is written in Pure Data (Pd) and then hosted via the iOS app MobMuPlat. This has allowed me to explore developing applications for iOS (helped in part from a TLTR Grant from Ramapo College). I have always enjoyed working in Pd alongside Max, and there are aspects I prefer in Pd (Graph-on-Parent, FOSS, for example), while other aspects I prefer in Max (help, grid patching, patch cord routing, gen~). My plan from here on out will include dividing my time between the two, with iOS development in Pd, most teaching in Pd (it is free after all), while personal performance tools will likely be developed in Max, usually hosted in Ableton Live via Max-For-Live, and teaching of synthesis will be conducted using BEAP in Max/Max-For-Live.
The second project I have started to develop is in some ways an extension of the planned composition I applied for funding through the ECA+ E.A.T. program. I don’t have the time (or funding) to develop the intended string quartet, between to the research needed to investigate folk music and develop those melodies into a modern texture, the part writing, and the electronic processing development. So I have decided to develop an hour+ solo performance of folk music presented through the eye of an electroacoustic composer. This will involve pieces performed myself on electronics, guitar, harmonic, and vocals. The major difference between the string quartet material and this “Folk Revue”, is that the works selected for the revue will be more reflective of my own path through folk music; its far from comprehensive, and probably is slanted a bit too much towards early 60s Greenwich Village folk than an a presentation of folk musics from many cultures and nations. This project is being worked out in Max and then hosted in Ableton Live (it just makes a lot of things much easier than “pure” Max). Many of the algorithms I’m developing either help me in performing solo, are generative and develop musical ideas automatically, or are interactive and respond to my performances. I hope to perform it somewhere around Easthampton over the next few months, ideally before my little homie is born!